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Italian gothic horror - any recommendations?

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Showing 26-30 of 30 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on 15 Apr 2012 13:33:00 BDT
Wow Captain, you've been busy on the posting front, I really think you'd like "Planet of the Vampires", like I said its basically another gothic horror but in space, Bava's legendary lighting is in full swing to give the alien planet some atmosphere and the ending is just great, it was released by the Italians and Americans, the Italian disc has slightly more footage but is in Italian with subtitles wheras the American disc is mildly cut and has an English dub, as to my favourite Bava it would have to be "Kill Baby... Kill!" which I felt was his most atmospheric followed by "Twitch of the Death Nerve" (don't you just love that alternate title?) which is one of the coolest gore films ever.

There's definitely something about "Nude for Satan", its not actually that great but I find myself always enjoying it, maybe its because its the only example I can think of of the stylish ways of Bava meeting the absurd trashy appeal of Andrea Bianchi, I'd be lying if I said I knew why I liked it, its one of those films I never know how to explain my appreciation for.

Speaking of Mexican horror films I recently saw "Brainiac", it was okay but doesn't live up to its apparant reputation, its fun in its own way but I think most people enjoy laughing at it rather than just enjoying it and I've never really understood or related to that mentality to films, it just drives me nuts to be honest.

I think you'll like "The Iron Rose", unfortunately it wasn't put out by Encore so the best option by far is the Blu-ray, as to Blu-rays of older films they can look better than DVD but between the best DVD's and Blu-ray I can say honestly the difference is noticable but not huge like the jump between VHS and DVD.

Don't call yourself sad for visiting the apartment, "All the Colors of the Dark" is one of my favourites too, was the flat still the same or did they remodel it? I must admit I don't leave Aberdeen very often as I don't like travel so I've yet to actually visit anything of cinematic significance but I imagine it would be quite a fun yet odd experience to be standing somewhere you're used to only seeing onscreen.

I'd recommend against paying an extortionate fee for the out of print tin of "The Beyond" especially since Grindhouse are about to re-release it on Blu-ray with a better transfer and possibly with the colour correct golden yellow prologue as opposed to the sepia one accidentally used on their old transfer, as to Arrow's attempt on the film its the biggest waste of money a fan could make.

I'm the complete opposite of you, I love Fenech but have never understood the hype surrounding Bolkan, I think we can both agree Barbara Bouchet is one of the best actresses in the genre though. I thought "Footprints" was great and Shameless did a great job putting the film back together, Ivan Rassimov was in "All the Colors of the Dark", he was cast in most of Martino's giallo along with Edwige Fenech and George Hilton, Sergio's brother Luciano always produced and Ernesto Gastaldi was usually the writer so I guess he found a crew that worked well and stuck with it.

Posted on 16 Apr 2012 03:35:59 BDT
I just got online after about ten days without a computer. I've been reading the posts on phone, but this was the first chance to respond to them. I also read your comment about moving over to the Italian cult forum and I'll head over there as well, but I'm the first one to go off on a tangent as well.

From memory, the apartment block is a little different to what you see in the film. This is usually a bit disappointing - I was heartbroken when I saw the manor house that was used as a setting for "Doctor Who: Pyramids of Mars" as it was all done up and unrecognisable - but from memory it was probably just a coat of paint and some changes to the carpark and gardens. The name of the apartment block is very prominently displayed in the film (I can't remember the name offhand) which is how I found it, but I can't for the life of me find the rural locations they used. Other sites I had visited were various locations for "Blowup", "The Devil Rides Out", "Vampyres"/"Rocky Horror Picture Show"/"The Reptile"/"Plague of the Zombies" (hitting four birds with one stone there, and four of my favourite films to boot), "The Witches" (completely unrecognisable now) and a few locations associated with "The Avengers" tv series.

There have been a few films that I watched, thought they were rubbish, but something about the fiml really stayed with me. Fulci's "Manhattan Baby" is another one, maybe because I like the music and all that interdimensional stuff and the Egyptian locations. I should try and find out which castle/chateau they used for "Nude for Satan" next time I'm in France (I believe it was a french castle) and I can visit the chateaux for some of my other favourite films like "Eye of the Devil" and Jean Rollin's films. Any ideas where it was filmed?

I did like Barbara Bouchet in "Don't Torture a Duckling", but apart from "Black Belly of the Tarantula", I can't think what else she has been in. Admittedly, Florinda Balkan can be a bit limited in her range, but the first of her films I saw was "Flavia the Heretic" (one of my Top Ten films) and I thought she was brilliant. It's the intensity of her presence on screen, and reminds me of some of these other actresses of that era like Ali McGraw in "The Getaway", where it's not so much their acting ability (or lack thereof) but their screen presence. That seemed to be quite typical of that period.

I'll report back on the other Martino giallos when I get my hands on them. It's a shame that "Your Vice is a Locked Room" is so expensive at the moment. I really wanted to see "Solange" (and visit the London locations on my next visit) but that is really overpriced at the moment.

Have you seen "Evelyn"? It's apparently a very gothic 'rural giallo' and similar to "Seven Deaths in the Cat's Eye". I was advised to buy the "Killer Queen" collectors edition as all the other transfers of "Evelyn" are pretty poor. The other giallos that no one has mentioned yet is the Luciano Ercoli films. Have you seen any of those?

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Apr 2012 07:55:55 BDT
Post Soviet says:
'I just got online after about ten days without a computer.....'

That sounds like a horror story. My condolences, Captain!

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Apr 2012 08:44:25 BDT
10 days on a property in rural australia without a computer with only extended family for conversation, to be precise ;)

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Apr 2012 18:46:23 BDT
I know what its like going without a computer, quite a pain once you're used to logging on most days, hard for some people to believe its been less than two decades since it became a run of the mill household object!

You've really been out and about, quite the opposite of me, I never leave town and rarely leave the house unless its work or shopping, for me the odd trip to see friends is about as adventurous as it gets but then I don't make too much money and blow it all on films.

Barbara Bouchet has been in quite a few good films including the excellent giallo "Amuck!" which you can only get on bootleg copies so far, "Milan Caliber 9" which is available in the Fernando Di Leo boxset, all good films if you like Euro-crime, another of those in which she really excels is "Ricco The Mean Machine" and she's in Andrea Bianchi's violent and perverse take on the genre "Cry of a Prostitute", she was also in "The Red Queen Kills Seven Times" which I just loved and yes you must get that Killer Queen boxset, "The Night Evelyn Came Out of the Grave" is a strange blend of giallo and gothic horror that works quite well, it is a bit like "Seven Deaths in the Cat's Eye" in style and works really well though it has strong sexual violence and feels more like a dark sexploitation quite early on.

I have no idea where "Eye of the Devil" was filmed and don't want to guess incase I get it wrong, maybe you could check filming locations on IMDb? I had no idea "What Have You Done to Solange?" was getting expensive, must be out of print, much of the giallo you mention but are missing are also hard to get right now sorry to say though if you have the money for them I would recommend all those i've already rattled on about and the Luciano Ercoli films in the NoShame 3 disc set, they're quite stylish but are more about the mystery elements than the sex or violence, still they fit enough of it in there.
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Discussion in:  horror discussion forum
Participants:  7
Total posts:  30
Initial post:  29 Mar 2012
Latest post:  16 Apr 2012

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